Make rules on government information disclosure count

Updated: 2013-09-24 13:56


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Strengthening the supervision and auditing of social support fee are urgent tasks facing authorities, says an editorial in the Beijing News. Excerpt:

The national auditing authority revealed on Sept 18 that 45 counties in nine provinces return some of the fee, a compulsory fee paid by parents delivering more babies than the law allows, to its collectors. The provincial family planning authorities also assign targets for the grassroots collectors.

The initial purpose of the fee is to subsidize the government’s support for the population who are born beyond the legal quota of their families. It has a strong symbolic meaning as an administrative fine.

It is ridiculous for the provincial family planning authorities to make it a stimulus for their subordinated departments to make profits.

The fee becomes a revenue source for the collectors and a way for the rich family to win legal identity for their babies who are born out of the legal quotas.

It is a pity that the fee’s problem has been there for a long time without being checked. Were it not for several lawyers’ persistent applications for the government’s disclosure of relevant information, it is impossible for the auditing departments to carry out the effective investigation so soon.

There are rules requiring the government to disclose information. The legal authority must make it easier for common citizens to charge the government departments with violating the rules and hold officials responsible for their actions.